• Kristi

Vet School Reading List

Vet School Reading List


So not going to lie, prior to starting vet school I bought many old books from graduating vet students and vowed that I’d read these thoroughly to make sure I mastered all the material in my classes. HA! Boy, was I in for a treat. The thought was a good one, but my expectations did not meet my reality.


The truth is, you’re never going to know enough or “master the material” during vet school & that’s okay! If I could turn back time now, I’d probably narrow my book list to the following that I’ve included here because these were the most helpful to me.


Note: Each school has different lists of suggested/required readings, so don’t hate me if you decide to invest in these and your told you have to get different ones! I’m just being upfront and honest about what I really loved using and what helped me not only during my first year but throughout all 4 years. Yes, believe it or not, I did crack open the textbooks each year, including 4th year (a lot).



Saunder’s Veterinary Anatomy Coloring Book

THIS. THIS IS WORTH EVERY PENNY. Consider it a teaching aid but also a therapeutic resource. This book has over 400 illustrations that correspond to anatomy of the head, neck, back, thorax, abdomen, extremities, reproductive organs, and more of the dog, cat, horse, pig, cow, goat, and exotics. The pages are detailed and descriptive.


Textbook of Veterinary Anatomy—Dyce, Sack, Wensing

You’ll find out quickly that anatomy is an intense course and you’ll probably be saying, “ why didn’t

I go to medical school”. No disrespect to all my MDs and DOs out there! This course is just overwhelming because you’re studying the anatomy of the dog, cat, horse, cow, etc. & still expected to know everything in great detail, which is why having a textbook to aid in your class notes is really helpful! Trust me. My roommate had this one & I really wish I would have invested in it.

Cunningham’s Textbook of Veterinary Physiology

THIS. IS. MY. FAVORITE. BOOK. OF. ALL. TIME. Granted, I haven’t read ALL the books so technically I don’t know if it’s the best but MAN. It saved my ass in physiology. That class is insane in the membrane, lol. TRUST ME. JUST GET THIS. It explains everybody system in great detail with visual aids. I would 20/10 recommend this book. If you purchase this and actually use it I bet you will pass the class with flying colors.

The Merck Veterinary Manual

I believe this is a must have. Whether you invest in it during your first year or fourth year. You’ll always have use for this book. Although they have this information online to use, there’s something nice about having a hard copy in front of you too. For the large volume of material in this book, I really think it’s cost effective and a great investment. This is the main book I used to study for the NAVLE.

Textbook of Veterinary Internal Medicine—Ettinger

Yup. This bad boy will save your ass in clinics and also in any internal medicine courses you take prior. This book is hella expensive but worth the investment. If my clinic doesn’t have it I am going to recommend it. Luckily, during my internal medicine rotation, we have multiple volumes of it in the rounds room so I used it to do a lot of paperwork etc. I wish I would have had this as an aid in my internal medicine courses.

Blackwell’s Five-Minute Veterinary Consult

LOVE these books for the clinics and out in practice. They have many editions of them which include, canine and feline, ruminant, equine, small mammal, laboratory tests and diagnostic procedures, etc. These books break down diseases quickly and efficiently. Again, definitely a good book to have towards the end of your clinical year/out in practice.

Emergency Procedures for the Small Animal Veterinarian—Signe J. Plunkett

This book was my staple during my emergency medicine rotation, and I decided to invest in this after I did a short GP externship in Vegas and saw many of the doctors using it! It is super helpful in terms of clinical application and I’d definitely recommend this one if you have an interest in emergency medicine but it’s also very useful for GP too.

Vet Life: A Snarky Adult Coloring Book

If you want another fun coloring book, THIS one is hilarious. I got this one as a gift (thanks Anne!) and it lives up to the title. If you don’t get this for yourself, definitely give it as a gift one day!

There are so many other textbooks I used over my 4 years in vet school, but these were the ones I continuously used and some I will probably continue to use out in practice. You definitely don’t need to invest in them all right NOW but if you did want a list, these are my recommendations.





ALSO-- IF YOU DECIDE TO BUY ANY OF THESE TEXTBOOKS ONLINE--ADD THIS LINK TO YOUR BROWSER TO SAVE $. THIS IS NOT A SCAM. I REPEAT, THIS IS NOT A SCAM. I've gotten back hundreds of dollars buy adding this to my browser whenever I'm online shopping lol. See, just want to help you guys out because I know $$$ is tight for 99% of us in vet school.



If you guys have your own favorite books or any questions, please drop them in the comments below!

685 views

©2020 by DogtorKristi. 

All content provided on this blog is my personal opinion and does not reflect the program I am currently enrolled in.